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: Yelp to close workplaces in New York, Chicago, D.C., saying future of labor is distant

Yelp Inc. announced Thursday it will shut its offices in three major U.S. cities, saying “the future of work at Yelp is remote.”

In a blog post, Chief Executive Jeremy Stoppelman said online-review company will close its “most consistently underutilized offices” in New York, Chicago and Washington D.C. effective July 29. “Combined, the three offices we’re closing saw a weekly average utilization of less than 2% of the available workspaces,” he said.

Stoppelman cited Yelp employee surveys that found 86% of respondents said they prefer to work from home most or all of the time, with 87% saying working from home made them more effective. He said that since Yelp reopened its offices nine months ago, giving employees the option to come in, only about 1% of workers have chosen to come in every day.

“Over time we came to realize that the future of work at Yelp is remote. It’s best for our employees, and for our business,” Stoppelman said, adding that record revenue in 2021 proves “just how productive we are in a remote work environment.”

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Stoppelmen added that Yelp’s remote-work policy has helped its hiring. saying the company has seen “a strong surge in candidate applications, with many noting that remote work is part of the reason they’re drawn to the company and role.”

Yelp has about 4,400 employees worldwide. Its headquarters in San Francisco, as well as offices in London, Toronto and other places, will remain open.

Yelp shares
YELP,
+2.08%
are down about 20% year to date, about the same as the S&P 500
SPX,
+0.95%
in 2022.

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